Our Story

We know that for an orphan life seems hopeless and that everyone has let them down, yet we don’t believe there story has end there, and so we have spent the last 11 years building an organization that provides love, care and support so that these kids are given a chance to thrive.

 We are a faith based organization and our children are raised in loving christian homes.  We work with local churches to help bring a caring faith based community around our families so that they are supported and loved. We share the love of Christ with our kids and with the community where we work.

Board of Directors

Levi and Jessie Benkert

Board Directors

Levi and Jessie Benkert moved to Ethiopia in 2009 with their three children to help care for orphans. They lived in Ethiopia for 6 years and have worked alongside Thomas Abebaw and the local team since then to provide the best possible care for the kids in the program. Levi leads our fundraising efforts in America and is responsible for setting the overall direction of the organization. He is passionate about creating teams that are aligned towards big world changing goals.

Reuben Gobezie

Board Member

The Gobezie Family loves the mission of Elevate Orphan.  Reuben Gobezie was born in Addis Ababa and has served on short-term missions in Ethiopia for several years.  Courtney Gobezie and Reuben have adopted a child from Ethiopia, Grace, who is now 7 years old.  The Gobezie’s have 4 children and regularly serve on missions together in Ethiopia.  The Gobezie’s are committed to see The Lord Glorified and Enjoyed by all of those who are impacted by Elevate Orphan’s sphere of influence.  The Gobezie Family loves orphan and street-kid ministries and are also actively involved with prison ministry and the homeless here, in the United States.

Brandon Edwards

Board Member

Our family loves the kids in Elevate Orphan and we love God’s heart to care for the orphan and the widow (James 1:27). I am the worship pastor at Journey Church in Bozeman, Montana and I have the privilege to oversee our global outreach for the past six years.  I have led short term teams to Ethiopia to partner with Elevate Orphan in Addis for many years and I’m grateful to serve such a wonderful organization in this way.

Neal Kellenberger

Board Treasurer

Husband to Kim and father to 6 children, including twins adopted from Ethiopia Over 15 years of public and private accounting experience, including over 8 years with non-profits. Passionate about the Kingdom of God and its focus on vulnerable children Enjoys getting coffee with friends/building relationships in his community.

Dr. Biruk L. Wamisho

Board Member

The "HABEL" family (abbreviations of our names) strongly believes that through His marvelous grace, GOD elevates everyone. Everyone means everyone! Seeing the challenges daily faced by the homeless and the orphans here in Addis, we are determined to fully engage and participate in supporting Elevate Orphan. We join our prayers, minds, hearts and hands with all who seriously address the challenges of orphan kids, the homeless and those in prison. We believe that this work is what Lord Jesus Christ wants done.  We believe in a holistic approach. We happily volunteer and with this team in E/O, we are sure we please GOD and impact many challenged lives in Ethiopia. They overcome their challenges and cross to surplus life. One day, they themselves will support the disadvantaged.

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PO Box 1063
Cedar Park, Tx 78613